The shadow of no Towers

Who’s minding the store? Watching city leaders get Maloofed up one side and down the other all summer, Bites is starting to wonder if there aren’t some neighborhoods other than the rail yards in need of a little attention.

Take the newly named “Tower District” along Broadway—which, in Bites’ glass-is-half-empty observation, is already slouching toward K Street status.

Joe Marty’s remains discouragingly boarded up. Same with Sweet Fingers, Eddie’s and Fuji, and the Tower Theatre marquee still begs us to “Save the Tower.”

And, on a recent visit to Tower Books, a clerk confided that “we just don’t know” if the Tower stores on Broadway will survive the bankruptcy and auction of the Tower Corp. Bites is left to imagine yet another stretch of darkened storefronts, left to the vagrants and—of course—the Pearcys.

But wait: “Things aren’t as dire as you think,” countered Luree Stetson, with the Tower District Alliance.

Cleanup and renovation on the Joe Marty’s site will begin in a few weeks, Stetson explained. The Tower Theatre seems to be OK for now, though screens downtown are still a concern. And somebody will surely want to move into the other Tower buildings if the anchor tenants pull up stakes. Bites was even heartened to hear Stetson say, “What makes that district so great is its diversity. People really don’t want it to become yuppie-fied.” In that case, maybe it’s really better if City Hall doesn’t try to help.

Cops beat SN&R staff: To the blogosphere, that is. It’s fine that the Sacramento Police Department needs to log its own Dear Diary details. Bites just can’t believe they beat SN&R to it. When every leggings-loving fashion writer at the Bee has her own blog, and the cops are posting about how hard it is to lose weight on the nightshift—no, seriously—some fancy vacuum tube should be set up to suck all of Bites’ brilliant thoughts onto the Internet hourly. Especially since Bites’ life is twice as interesting as a cop’s, according to quotes like this one: “Overall police work is a wonderful and gratifying career. It allows you to help people who are sometimes less fortunate and might be down on their luck.” Apparently, police officers are just like volunteers serving up soup and hugs at Loaves & Fishes.

Bites was hoping for some scenes from Sacramento’s dirty, fuzzy underbelly, but at, half the items are posted by mlazark. Would that be spokeswoman Michelle Lazark—one of the people feeding the media the very thinnest stream of information about crimes and criminals? Still, Bites did find an interesting post in the “editorials” section. After the department took a little heat for closing Highway 50 to save the life of a possible jumper, an anonymous poster got all defensive:

“You may have seen what a small pebble could do to a windshield. Imagine what a body would do. … It’s time to give law enforcement a little credit. These protocols are set in place to protect the public, not to aggravate holiday travelers. Fortunately we were able to save this man’s life. His family was overwhelmingly grateful for those who took the time to care. Our department would do the same for you.”

Glad that’s out there. Bites was afraid there would never be a way for the police to brag about their good deeds.

How it’s done: You know who else ought to have blogs? Local mayors. Especially when those mayors are as funny (in every sense of the word) as Woodland Mayor Matt Rexroad.

Rexroad once boasted on his blog that in his youth he killed a bear and got sprayed naked with a fire hose in survival-training school. Now, Rexroad is in a battle of the blogs with the mysterious Yoloblogger, who regularly dissects Rexroad’s campaign for Yolo County supervisor with a blend of fake news (“Landfill needs early expansion to handle influx of Rexroad bullshit”) and deliciously juvenile humor (comic panels featuring Rexroad in what appears to be a three-way reach-around with Karl Rove and George W. Bush). It’s the kind of full-contact politics you just don’t find enough of on this side of the river. Watch and learn, Sacramento.